WHY KRISHNA AND RADHA LOVE THE MONSOON
In the eternal hemorrhaging of the present,
the monsoon is a man pursuing, a god preserving.
His sperm penetrates
the shores of India’s hips, satiates her dry, rough skin.
But here, high in the mountains, dark clouds
finger across the distant sky.
Beneath the blazing sun, I lap
the sweat from between your breasts.
The monkeys are in heat around us;
They leap from tree to tree,
their mouths shut, as they prepare for the tornado
of our love. India bares her breasts, atop her waterbed, seduced.
As the fog rolls in and chills us,
I notice the cool liquid
vanishing from your august temple
as the humor of the present continues its steady flow.
In the early morning fog before the dim light fully lightens
I sit on the steps of my porch sipping tea
And watch the mountain on the other side of the valley open its eyes.
I cannot see the more distant mountain; it is hidden by the fog. Nearby,
The call to prayer has ended, and all I hear
In the deafness of my ears is silence.
I cannot hear the mourning birds in their own pitiful prayer.
The neighborly dogs pay me a visit, as if it’s been years,
And take interest in the tea that keeps me warm.
I sit in peace, waiting.
One of these mornings, a herd of Indian bison will walk by
For their breakfast. They will be the late risers.
The lone bull will hang back and chill, deep in the trees.
These bison are like cattle, grazing and gazing as they eat.
They are fat and healthy, huge and fast.
Their fierce eyes pierce my soul.
And yet, they never come then, as I sit; I only see them when
They make their midday rounds. The eyes of others widen,
As if they’ve seen a ghost. The others often shut their doors.
But I watch the bison fill their bellies; as I draw near, awed,
I am reminded of when I once rested under the dark sky,
a canopy of clouds above me, I saw the silhouette
of six bison meander passed my chair, unafraid.
And now I stand and shudder, shame-faced,
For these wild beasts migrate down the mountain to this new home,
Leaving a world they never wanted to leave, never wanted destroyed.
© 2013 Joshua Gray. First published by RaedLeafPoetry-India 2013.
Image Courtesy: Foster Wiley